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Five Ways CIOs Can Impress Their CEOs: Today and in the Future

Five Ways CIOs Can Impress Their CEOs: Today and in the Future

CEOs will increasingly demand that IT leaders excel in leadership, strategic thinking, marketing IT, business and communication. Prepare for the change

Four: Be a Skilled Marketer of IT

Other executives and employees won't know the about all the great things IT is doing — unless you tell them.

Gupta: Many CIOs see marketing as a dirty word.

Merry: We branded our IT group. We gave them a logo and played the marketing guys at their own game. Sell yourself because you have something to sell.

Badavas: Don't market "stuff." Market the value — the result — you caused. That will have people sit up and take notice. CEOs would love to cut through the preamble before the answer. Start with the answer and then you've got my attention.

Patrick: But be careful what you ask for. If you ask for that seat, you'd better be able to deliver value. If you can only talk about speed and feeds, you'll find yourself quickly out of there.

Badavas: [CIOs and IT leaders] are much better than they think at talking about using information as a growth driver.

Five: Prepare for the Future

The CIO role will continue to change as more tech-savvy folks enter the workforce and sit on boards. Make sure you're prepared to collaborate with them and adapt to company's changing needs.

CIO: Look into your crystal ball: What does the role of the CIO look like 10 years out?

Gupta: Boards of directors are going to get younger, and they will have more appreciation of technology. So there will be a better chance for that connection with the CIO to happen naturally. But since many more people in the organization will understand the strategic use of technology, the person with the CIO title will no longer have a monopoly on that. Expectations will be different and higher as both sides get more sophisticated.

Merry: It won't be like today. We won't have the typical roles. There will be more collaboration and partnerships with noncompeting companies in the use of technology and sharing of resources. You won't need a CTO in the organization — HP will do that and you'll manage the relationship. There will be a much smaller senior IT team working with the business and managing relationships. And there will be a lot of Indians and Chinese in our organizations.

CIO: What advice would you give the audience that they could take away and use to get better prepared to meet the new CEO expectations?

Patrick: Get exposure beyond your function area of expertise, and get international experience — live overseas. I look for that with every person I place. And though it seems basic, work for good companies. People want to hire talented, innovative change drivers.

Merry: Be brave in front of the business and make sure you get the relationships and governance right.

Gupta: Learn the CEO's agenda and get yourself and your team on that agenda. Make sure the CEO knows you understand that agenda while you also keep the trains running.

Badavas: Make something happen from a business perspective. Influence your peers, articulate future possibilities and just be bold.

Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.

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